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About Literature / Student J. SteffiFemale/Unknown Group :iconinner-realms: Inner-Realms
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A Substitute for Time Travel
It’s been nagging at me for months now,
like a shadow to my shadow;
incessant in its presence.
And now that I don’t have
papers and books
to rush reading,
it’s been tugging on my sleeves
more than usual;
a storm cloud in an otherwise
pristine blue sky.
And for that length of time
I remembered one of the core reasons
I started writing:
You immortalize people
when you write them.

Names and lives you’ve never heard of
live on in paper as poems and sonnets
and stories.
The lovers without happy endings
are engraved in the letters
they sent each other,
that were never read.
Someone who has dreamed
on the stars centuries ago
now lies in an unmarked grave,
but was once someone else’s dream,
someone else’s lover.
It was one of the most beautiful
thoughts I’ve ever had,
that’s why I didn’t want to write you.
You took my hand in yours
as if you knew the scars they’ve traced
even I have barely seen.
Did you know that the few
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 8 1
One Way Ticket to La La Land
Every book about biology would tell me my chest
is made of a ribcage, my bones strong
but capable of breaking.
I know that my lungs are what allow me to breathe,
and my feet that make me turn.
But no page from the memory of history would ever tell me
that music is what’ll truly make me hear
and soar
to places even my imagination could never think of.
No classroom would ever teach me
that the scent of rain would take you back
to the life of a person you could have had,
nor will a high score on a test
ever make me see the blood and the sweat
on every brushstroke of a painting.
My lungs would never run out of steam
without love to make it,
the same way my feet would never tiptoe to the stars
without prose and poetry and insanity
whispering in my head.
I am not just skin and a tangle of veins
passing for less than a millennia,
I am also fire and the eye of a storm,
the ruin of a city and the sail of a sunken ship,
I am the sound of a word in a tongue
that will exist when I am
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 6 2
Parallel Earth
I wonder what happened today on the other side of the world
or even a hundred kilometres from here
as I woke to the sound of an alarm
and an almost fully risen sun.
What thoughts did they first have
or were they still asleep—
perhaps they didn’t doze at all.
Was there a book beside their bed
about a hundred-and-fifty pages to the end
or was their lover’s arm wrapped around them instead?
What stories could be told or could have been
in the times I stared off into the wall
making out minutes that was better
than what I had.
Does the person with my name
in another timezone
think about these possibilities
as they walk alone on their way home?
Or is this one of those days
I’m left with a ‘maybe’
hanging in the balance?
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 0 0
A Year and a Lightyear
We like to think we’re thousands of miles above the core of the earth,
but some days, when we can taste rain on our tongues
and it doesn’t pour, we can feel the distance
between the tips of our fingers and the clouds;
the air in our lungs a tease.
And I remember now, that I’ve never stood in a downpour
or much less danced in one; petrichor soaking my feet.
I was always either afraid of catching a cold
or looking dumb:
a girl with bare legs
catching a portion
of the seas.

But maybe that’s why I mumble words
when you look at me, why I’m reluctant to believe
I’ve found home in a warmth that isn’t mine.
It’s staggering to think that three hundred and sixty five days can pass
without us really living.
[We’re stars, too, but I think we forgot.]
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 2 0
Footfalls of a Whisper
When you’re standing in the balance
between two breaths and euphoria,
the faintest sounds dangling by your ear,
you could feel the ground shift
just the tiniest bit,
but enough,
enough to make you fall in an abyss
lighter than the clouds you’ve never touched,
fingers saturated with wanderlust
you couldn’t begin to imagine.
The smallest hummingbird and the largest whale
long for this quickly dissipating dream
more than you and me combined,
and we dream of it too often.
It isn’t something we remember
when all the thoughts we think have gone away,
rather, it is a gust of wind against our skin
on a cold, crisp morning,
a wayward thread teased from the end of our sleeve.
It is mundane as the minutes before we’re asleep,
existent, but easily adrift.
That is why I lay its dust on your eyelids
when your secrets don’t escape your lips
and your hands are tangled in mine too tight.
This way, you won’t have to search the stars
to have my share of l
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 3 1
A Game with Lightyears
I think about all the wishes I made on every birthday cake,
on every coin I tossed in a wishing well,
on every random star I picked
whether it was shooting
or not.
How they’ve gathered through the years,
dusty with all my metaphors
and forgetfulness,
a centimetre away from completely fading.
They were like roses in full bloom—
heavy with distant breaths
and light as they scattered through the air.
But these days my wishes are simple,
thrown to clouds and flowers
that are not daffodils:
to be able to sleep without dreaming
and to wake without wanting to go back
to sleep.
The stars don’t stare at me the same way they did
as I looked for constellations, small arms
reaching into the slight glare.
Now my hands are in my pockets
and I stare back blankly,
empty of any wish.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 5 0
Songs Souls Sing
You can’t measure the sadness in poems
the way you can’t measure love;
there is no distance between lines
that could ever justify a tear
that’s been shed out in the open
without anyone ever seeing it.
They don’t tell us anymore
that the most fragile part of us
cannot be seen, a soul running rampant
when you drink a cup of euphoria
but remains bound to your bones
as you fracture from every punch
that doesn’t touch your skin.
There are ghosts in each of us
haunting the shadows of our steps,
trapped in our skeletons,
cracking as we count the minutes
to the next time we let it loose,
or fill to the brim.
When did we start being ticking time-bombs
just waiting to go off?
To splinter in all directions
in the hope of being someplace else,
someone else, in someone else’s dream.
But maybe we should hold on
to the light of dead stars
a little longer,
they still after all
let us wish
eons after they’re long gone.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 8 5
The Silence of Lies
Did you ever wonder how many pieces of me
you could catch in one hand?
How many regrets
and crumpled lines of poetry
I never even knew I had?
Because some days, holding myself together
feels like I’m under the ocean
with my mouth wide open,
gasping for air.
And I know there’s a sky above me,
just as blue and just as endless
that it seems near impossible for me
not to see it, but that’s what happens.
That’s what happens on the days
I can’t look you in the eye
to tell you what’s wrong,
so you find me behind the words you read
all bent and distorted,
so abstract they’re almost poetic.
You can see them dancing in the pages
of my sketchbook, in the lines of my brow,
the crease of my smile.
And I hope, the way the moon
pulls the sea to her,
that you saw them, too,
and maybe understood them,
for all those times you told me
I was going to be okay.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 7 2
Where Shooting Stars Go
We’ve become dreamers with too much
storms on our hands and too little
space between our fingers
to let them breathe—
so much so, that the stars
we used to wish on
have moved on to better dreams,
better dreamers.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 12 4
Stars and Clouds
Sometimes I want my feelings to have temporary amnesia—
for me to forget, on a small plea from the clock,
that they’re tangible, real,
and intertwined into my senses.
I want to be innocent and ignorant of my life for a while,
to be another person in the same body
but not trapped, not bound by the strings
in my bones I forgot I put there.
I want to be free in the sense I make of the word;
utterly adrift in the embrace of the wind
like tinder kissed by fire, made strong
by every breath.
I want these things,
want and want and want them
for the days I feel like climbing on a cloud
and disappearing, to travel the world
and the galaxy like I’m not in it,
but us as friends and lovers
and both,
completely ephemeral
but that much more everlasting.
Instead I hear my soul sigh
and feel my feet planted in the ground.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 5 0
Warmth and Rain
He was the kind of person you don’t fall in love with
at first sight;
he was a wallflower
with all the beauty and lightness
of that meaning.
You could tell him how you loved
and hated the stars,
how they burned with all your secrets
and how great they were at keeping them
and he would understand as if he held
the universe in his palm,
not one galaxy explored,
not one galaxy his lover.
But you would say it was all right,
you don’t know what it’s like
to hold all that space, either.
He was the one you’d listen to music
in the rain with, just to feel
both sensations at once,
variability and repetition.
And at that moment, your heart would race
for the first time it felt calm.
You would fight all these rushing waves
telling you he was your friend
and soulmate,
with neither of you knowing it.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 14 4
Pivot Point
I’m singing a song at the top of my lungs
with my lips shut;
every lyric a scream,
every chorus a silence.
And sometimes I’m lost
and sometimes I’m found,
sometimes I’m both at once—
spiralling down or dancing to the tune.
I don’t know how to control it,
the gush and ebb of my soul
like waves on a still pond,
fighting, fighting to mimic the ripples of the ocean.
I have been at both ends of the spectrum
at the same time,
trying to pull every part of me to the middle,
trying to balance the see-saw line,
to take hold of the ship’s prow
once again.
But maybe in this lies the beauty
of black and white,
of feeling something too much
or not at all,
the impulse of something unimagined,
the scribble of a soul.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 4 1
Hello Sandman
If only I could sleep every night
with poetry on my lips,
the scent of unwritten words
clinging to my pulse, my lungs,
then perhaps I would feel the weight
of the wings
I always thought
I had.
But no one can ever be that star-kissed.
We are all both ends of the spectrum
and all the shades in between—
the unconscious version of standing
on a boundary,
two places at once,
racing thoughts
without a
stop sign.
And maybe that’s the grand plan,
for all the universe’s emotions
to be melded into one soul,
one space, one person,
for joy to be seen only in sadness
like lovers teasing,
almost touching hands.
It’s a dance on centerstage
with an audience of none.
But I’ll move anyway, I’ll flow,
and maybe in doing so
I’ll see poetry in my dreams.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 8 2
You can’t force a novel out of someone
who’s a short story.
And yes,
everyone’s a book in their own right;
with chapters and page-breaks
and covers-
the latter most of all.
That’s why he couldn’t stay.
He had pages to write and others to read.
And he’s read you to the last punctuation,
the last hurrah,
and he got bored.
So he opened other spines
and slept in their papery scents,
with you no more than an afterthought,
the past to the present.
He wasn’t your prince charming,
or your knight,
or your childhood best friend
who falls in love with you,
he was a passing breath,
a momentary pulse,
a distant memory
you learn to write
in between the lines.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 15 3
a mirage of paper and ink
Sometimes I feel a bit of my soul slips from me
in a way that I don’t like,
as if I were wine cupped in palms
with fingers spread too widely-
sand and stone beneath
to sip up the cheap red.
And I’m afraid I’ll forget
the parts of me I love,
the parts that keep me up, in flight,
but bound to the earth.
I’m fleeting in a non-artistic sort of way,
like smoke blending with the fog.
But maybe this my way of letting go,
of dissipating into the air,
unseen and unheard,
without completely
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 4 2
Seconds and Millennia
I may not get to see the end of time,
but the simple fact that I’m living
for a span of forever
makes me feel infinite-
where every breath is a pulse,
every thought, a dream,
and every second, a risk.
And maybe that’s all I can hope for,
and all I ever really want.
:icondsteffi:DSteffi 7 3


the tall climb up by imaginism the tall climb up :iconimaginism:imaginism 476 28 14 by Ladowska 14 :iconladowska:Ladowska 553 11 Wendigo by FlyingViperArt Wendigo :iconflyingviperart:FlyingViperArt 215 10 Amyethest by FlyingViperArt Amyethest :iconflyingviperart:FlyingViperArt 174 15 Laundry Washing Anime?!? by Cioccolatodorima Laundry Washing Anime?!? :iconcioccolatodorima:Cioccolatodorima 2,341 327
toxicology // anthology
"you can't hear your heart pumping,
you can only hear the doors closing."

nightshade and hemlock
they had opened a window to the storm.
it rained the day she
stepped foot inside a clearing,
vertigo and photophobia
the portrait of twilight sleep.
solana, there goes the next.
she turned at the sound. looked
all around, at nothing but
found nothing but earth and the
roots against her skin
                                  and then
the belladonna singing in her sweet, venom voice—
    blind as a bat, red as a beet,
    hot as a hare, dry as a bone

she scrambled to her feet.
    mad as a hatter, bloated as a toad
impossible, impossible;
she fell to her knees.
    and the heart runs alone
through rime-coated double vision
were her own
crooked fingers reaching for dark dusty berries
imprisoned behind the serrated lea
:iconpatchworklynx:PatchworkLynx 35 14
Story Time
Where honey bees blend into sunsets
They sit in a crooked circle
Writing non-love poems
Writing stories
Writing the lives of the living they never knew
As documents or poems or journal entries
Encoded with flavors only the pen knows
And curiously
They pass those words down the line
They read
They think
And pass the papers back, then begin again
With a new dream, speckled with what they know now
Like nascent freckles in the wrinkles of a sun-worn face.
:iconbubbybubbles12:bubbybubbles12 45 7
this is hospice
some of the most homely comfort
i've ever known,
i found in hollowed-out bones
and temples,
built from the sticks and stones that broke them.
our hearts beat like gravediggers knocking on tombstones and
i thought shovel-on-stone wouldn't
change me, but
at the end of the day it was just as
self-destructive as
i am.
and our teeth, they chatter like
rock drills
hammering against each other until
there's nothing left to prove and
all that's left is a powder residue on every bathtub rim
(the one in the sink is tinted red,
and that's how i learned how hard it is to
hide your mistakes).
i could never take it back.
the long nights and unintended words that
filed me down to nearly nothing,
but i found home in recognizing the
pain in others' eyes and
the ones like me, they
taught me how to hide it
(that's how i learned that once you've felt it you'll see it no matter how thick
they layer on lies and pretend).
there was something of peace in knowing
i wasn't the most broken but
i was still drawn
:iconcatloversjt:catloversjt 23 11
self protrait
are we who we are
inherently, or are we
just what our relationships
bring out of us?
(a persona is a relationship
with the self, circular reasoning,
a short circuit -
sparks, before the burnout.)
:iconwei-en:wei-en 28 10
residue from a pill too hard to swallow
i am tired of being myself nowadays.
my skin has become the only barrier
between my existence and my evaporation.
it feels like a seed,
growing from my chest into my body.
i had all the pills in my hand
before i downed it.
it dissolved onto my tongue
like chocolate in my mouth,
i can still taste it, lining the back of my teeth.
it still lingers.
i saw my mother cry that night
over the monster she created,
felt my whole self disappear into her tears.
i drowned in her voice,
drowned myself into the walls
so that she couldnt see me anymore.
i spit the pills out,
but she still cries about it.
:iconterribly-forgotten:terribly-forgotten 6 2
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Untitled-5 by aditya777 Untitled-5 :iconaditya777:aditya777 6,663 47 I can Fly too by yuumei I can Fly too :iconyuumei:yuumei 5,358 295 Lady Samurai by Corbistiger Lady Samurai :iconcorbistiger:Corbistiger 65 16 My other Wing II by aiki-ame My other Wing II :iconaiki-ame:aiki-ame 3,567 121 Long Distance by P-Shinobi Long Distance :iconp-shinobi:P-Shinobi 3,720 177 Carciphona - Duel by shilin Carciphona - Duel :iconshilin:shilin 26,588 878 Strangled Oasis by AquaSixio Strangled Oasis :iconaquasixio:AquaSixio 4,545 443 Come September by AquaSixio Come September :iconaquasixio:AquaSixio 4,879 641


1,685 deviations

It’s been nagging at me for months now,
like a shadow to my shadow;
incessant in its presence.
And now that I don’t have
papers and books
to rush reading,
it’s been tugging on my sleeves
more than usual;
a storm cloud in an otherwise
pristine blue sky.

And for that length of time
I remembered one of the core reasons
I started writing:

You immortalize people
when you write them.

Names and lives you’ve never heard of
live on in paper as poems and sonnets
and stories.
The lovers without happy endings
are engraved in the letters
they sent each other,
that were never read.
Someone who has dreamed
on the stars centuries ago
now lies in an unmarked grave,
but was once someone else’s dream,
someone else’s lover.

It was one of the most beautiful
thoughts I’ve ever had,
that’s why I didn’t want to write you.

You took my hand in yours
as if you knew the scars they’ve traced
even I have barely seen.
Did you know that the few stars
I could manage to glimpse that night
were the only thing keeping my world
from spinning out of balance
when you attempted what you did?

4 months, 1 week and 6 days
and it’s all still playing in my head.
For someone everyone calls smart,
I went above and beyond to be dumb.

Because the worst part is,
half of it was my fault.

I will never know if your apology
was meant or half-baked.
But I refuse to think that someone
I once called warmth and rain
was friends with someone
who could be so shallow.

So I forgive you.

And this time, these words are meant.
A Substitute for Time Travel
Benefit of the doubt. 
It's been a tough few weeks. I've been dealing with my mental issues and it's not been easy. Reactions from my loved ones and closest friends have been varied. It's all been overwhelming. But surely and slowly, I'm getting better. 

You guys know I don't usually post journals or updates, so this is pretty kind of new-ish.

But there are better news. I have submitted 6 of my poems to Aleola Journal of Poetry and Art and am currently awaiting for their response. I may get rejected, but it was worth a try. To other poets or writers out there who would want to submit their work as well, here is the link:

For those who are wondering, the poems I sent were:

rain, rain, don't go away"To belong to you for an erstwhile;
a million flashbacks for when
we forgot and remembered;
elisions on cut-away smiles
and first sight first loves
because just because.
Planets have always been
more stagnant than stars;
and better apt in phagocytosis.
Now our immensities could fly
from our teeth;  desuetudes
on denouements.
But how're they half a penumbra?
Petrichor hello's not reaching home;
though rain is rising in earnest.
Further and farther
and found and more lost;
the frailty of downpours
is falling too raw.
But I- I stole the sugar on our plenilune;
mellifluous tacendas too dulcet
and too undone 
on overly written palimpsests."
    AcrophobiaThrowing stares on aquariums must be fun;
fins resemble birds well enough.
If you squint and walk on tiptoe,
air quotations could be more than wings.
Trust me.
You’d be lighter than steam.
And with seven continents as your runway,
you can forget about rockets;
the clouds would look like buildings.
Just invite me for a little sightseeing,
because the wrinkles grow on my adrenaline.
Let’s not look down.
There are no kite runners waiting for us.
    This Side of the Moon is DisproportionateI left your scent
on the talons of 
I couldn't trust voices
for safekeeping.
Do I prolong you
with every hyphen
I choke; as if I were pulling
a cord and untying
ink blots?
She never really did bother
with the clean-up.
I counted one
bruises on your eyebrow,
has anyone ever told you
                        you could stop hitting yourself [now?]
The scabs of your travels
to midnight streetlamps
don't even come close to the
psithurism of your laughter.
You are extrasolar
                         please don't drown 
                         as a meteor.
How many hesitations
am I
in the span of eight o
    A Telescope for PolarisThe strands of my percussion strings
turn dull in the sight of
your subconscious bearings.
You are like the hail
who threatened to come;
an itch
I can’t quite place.
And I write letters
to the archers
and the mermaids-
hoping they’d bring me a swallow
to hunt the raven-like insect
whispering nevermore
in the recesses of my hair.
[So far they haven’t replied yet.]
Thus I’ve found
I could distract myself with pastimes
I’ve come to name as habits--
like drinking the tepid water
of other people’s drudgery,
while I ponder on what sorts of poems
you wrote
when she called herself yours.
It must have been quite nice,
while the coffee was newly brewed.
And I see how clouds
could pass for stars some nights;
why cicadas sing
and nightingales don’t.
I see your eyes
and how they see things differently,
how I want them to know
a little part of what they don’t.
And in staring in them
as if I could knit my universe
straw by straw, I’ve reali
    Stars Wish on People TooDefine me when you take swigs
the number of your hair.
The unmoving frames
of your Sunday musings
whisper in caps lock;
they want to be forgotten-
they told me,
like I could save you from myself
I’ve always wondered
what it would be like
to play the piano
with my feet on an acoustic run;
the shadow that isn’t friends
with the light like a body part
I’ve always known,
always had,
but never quite seen.
I sugarcoat myself
hanging by mere fiction,
a pendulum and a metronome
coming home.
What are we but allusions
to the people behind us,
ambivalence to the rivers
that never meet the ocean.
It’s frightening how
we’ve been lost for years
but no one’s come to find us.
Dusk it seems
is the lesser of two evils,
midnight is just too mysterious.
2.54 centimetersI admire the way small letters shout.
How a voice that’s both mine
and isn’t-
touches the skyline of every tear
of every crevice
of every line 
         where my bones and muscles kiss.
I’m an explosion of noises
that’s too much
all at once;
a collection of sundials 
praying for the moon 
with just a cupful of made up constellations
in her pocket. 
The way my feet pirouette
to the sunflakes of summer
assuage the assonance of a sonder
of souls-
and the sillage  of a million laugh lines
are more than enough to make me
Had I known all the songs 
we’ve carved with our clefs
on my fourteenth birthday; 
I’d trade all my blown out candle wax 
for my skin to be papyrus;
and my body -- poesy.

                    I want to look at his blend of colours,


The instructions for submission state that the work to be submitted must not be published anywhere prior. I took 'published' to mean on paper, which is why I still submitted my work. (Is that right, do you think? 030)

The reason for my sending my work to an official entity was something that came to mind randomly. Growing up in the Philippines, with a background for pretty much a normal family, I never thought of becoming a published writer. This was something my mom suggested, and I thought, why not? It also serves as something else to think about while I'm getting better with my personal issues. 

Hope you're having a good day, thanks for reading this post, and stay awesome, you!



Add a Comment:
bubbybubbles12 Featured By Owner 5 days ago   General Artist
I hope you have a fantastic day! :D
inthespacebetween Featured By Owner Apr 12, 2017
thanks much for the watch!
roadkillKitten Featured By Owner Nov 19, 2016
Thanks for the Favourite Star on "The Old Fisherman"
DamaiMikaz Featured By Owner Oct 4, 2016  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks for adding [Inktober] 01 Business to your collections. I'm happy that you like the piece :la:
ViciousGalan Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
Just wanted to voice my appreciation for your works in a general sense. I find myself sucked into the imagery of the metaphors yet the meassages are conveyed very tactfully. I look forward to reading more.
DSteffi Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2016  Student Writer
This means a lot. Thank you very much!
chadwood Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2016   Writer
I know this is long overdue but thank you for swinging by my page and reading!
spoems Featured By Owner Aug 28, 2016   Writer
Thanks for dropping by.
YouInventedMe Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2016   Writer
Thanks for the +fav on human time capsule!
TheEvilOvelords Featured By Owner Aug 12, 2016  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for joining our group! :D
May we be graced by your presence for a long time :meow:

Sakurai Amy
Founder of The Writer Gang
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